Cissy Houston, Whitney Houston’s mother, is speaking out against Lifetime’s upcoming biopic about her late daughter. In a statement to Entertainment Tonight, she said her family is “exhausted by the continuing misinformation” and pleaded to “let [Whitney] rest.”
“In the two years since Whitney’s death, many people have stepped forward to speak about their close relationship with her,” Cissy said. “I find it difficult to believe people who knew and supposedly loved her would participate in a movie about her done by folks who didn’t know her. We are exhausted by the continuing misinformation and comments offered by people who did not know her. Please please let her rest.”
Angela Bassett, the biopic’s director, co-starred in 1995’s Waiting to Exhale with Whitney Houston, although she told EW in a recent interview that she didn’t remain close to the musician after the movie wrapped: “I can’t say that,” Bassett said, “but I think that I had an opportunity, of course, to appreciate and love her from afar and then to spend time with her in a working situation.”
In the same interview, Bassett clarified that she reached out to Houston’s family early on. “Of course we’re not going to do the movie and not say anything to them,” Bassett said, “We paid our respects and let the conversation be had, just to get their okay.”
Cissy isn’t the only Houston to be troubled by the film, though: Bobbi Kristina Houston Brown, Whitney’s daughter, took to Twitter earlier this month to blast Bassett after hearing the director didn’t consider her for the main role, even though she’s been vocal in the past about her desire to play her mother. Instead, Yaya DaCosta, an actress and former America’s Next Top Model contestant, will play the role.
Bassett’s representative hasn’t yet responded to EW’s request for comment.